Gosh I loathe this revolting money grubbing fitness chain.
Gym giant Fitness First has taken a former member, who could not work out due to medical problems, to court – all for the sake of $200.
I was a member of Fitness First in Park St, Sydney CBD. I was disgusted by how filthy the changerooms were — the showers were visibly dirty, had a strong fungal smell, there were disused bandaids floating around and human fluids (saliva, mucus etc) around that hadn’t been cleaned away for days. Unfortunately I hadn’t inspected the changerooms etc before signing up to the contract.
I notified the gym that I considered their cleaning program inadequate and received a response from the manager that they had had a huge influx of members and hadn’t adjusted cleaning frequency accordingly and they would do so.
However, cleanliness did not improve in following weeks, so I decided to cancel my month-to-month membership (I had wisely taken month-to-month even though it was much more expensive, because of past experiences of disappointing service from commercial gyms, despite being locked into long term contracts.)
Fitness First made me pay another whole month of the month-to-month membership (buried in their terms and conditions somewhere) and refused to waive it even though I pointed out the hygiene problems in their changerooms. They simply said that after I’d pointed it out to them they’d addressed the problem.
The experience left me with a very bad taste in my mouth about Fitness First. Not to mention that they appeared to have rented space at the top of escalators etc to touters for fitness supplements etc on a frequent basis, so you’d get hassled each time you came to do a workout. There were scarce gym instructors available to help you free of charge, either. It seemed everywhere you turned, someone had their hand out for more money.
I was even told by a personal trainer in the gym that none of the money from the $50 three-session personal training packs that Fitness First pushes new members to buy when they sign up is passed on to the personal trainers. The trainer said they are expected to provide the three training sessions free of charge to the member, Fitness First keeps the $50, and the supposed upside is that the personal trainer might get a potential ongoing client. What an exploitative rort.
I would never again deal with Fitness First and advise everyone else not to join them as well. I’ve discovered that council-run municipal gyms, while nowhere near as flash, are just as good functionally and don’t have the intense pressure-sell mentality that Fitness First has.
(Published here for the sake of warning other Googlers who might be thinking of signing up with Fitness First.)